Behind the Scenes

Remembering the Crisis Colony

Dear community members,

Did you know? The very first HECUA program, offered in 1968, was called the “Crisis Colony.”

During a period of intense national unrest, grief, anger, and upheaval following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., thirty Crisis Colony students lived together in an old Jewish synagogue in North Minneapolis, learning from community members, Dr. Torstenson, and each other.

Fifty years later, as our country navigates a resurgent political and moral crisis, HECUA classrooms are more valuable than ever. They are spaces where students feel empowered to challenge false narratives, where their lived experience is valued, and where their potential to advance social justice in never in question.

Can we count on you to support this vital work?

Inequality in America S’18 student Anam Hasan describes the HECUA experience this way:

“This was one of the best experiences of my life. I learned how systems and institutions really work, and uncovered many personal truths. A lot is expected of you, but that is because HECUA is creating leaders who are powerful and amazing at what they do.”

HECUA is dedicated to creating spaces that tell the truth, build community, and above all, support students and community partners as they work for justice.

In order to do this, we need your help.

Will you join other HECUA alumni and friends in making a financial contribution to support students like Anam?

Click here to make your gift today. 

In solidarity, 
HECUA staff + faculty

p.s. If you’re interested in seeing images from HECUA’s early years, check out this scrapbook: HECUA Scrapbook I. The images and stories within were compiled during the 1970 Urban Studies term by then-student Marilyn Salmon. 

Back To Top Menu